Every TBL team needs a Britney Nickle.

Someone at the top of the organization who works perfectly in tandem with the Team Market Owner to ensure the team on the floor is equally successful as the front office making it all happen: from promoting the roster, to putting people in the seats in a brand new arena, season-long ticket sales, and with a home opener looming large in Lebanon, Indiana.

That’s just the start of the long list in a role she executes picture perfectly.

The team photography and social media presence must also be on point to not only feel professional, but to look the part as well. That’s Britney too. The sponsorships for the team? That’s her handy work as well. And that’s only a portion of how this Vice President is running the point for her team from the offseason checklist, through summer league and player tryouts, to the TBL Draft Combine, and now into training camp and the start of the preseason.

In early February in Speedway, Indiana during the TBL Draft Combine, Britney was in her element for four straight days. She was on the go. She was about her business. She was showing the rest of the league what running a TBL organization looks like.

“I think overall the event went well. I don’t know…I was working the whole time and actually didn’t even see one game of basketball,” Britney said about the TBL Draft Combine.

Don’t worry. Britney will see plenty of basketball games this season as she enters her third year with the team, who announced they will play this season at the 200,000 square foot Farmer’s Bank Field House in Lebanon. Recently, Britney took time to reflect on getting her start in basketball working with TMO Preston Myers, the hard work and long hours invested into the team, forming a bond with players in Lebanon, and what the Leprechauns and TBL truly mean to her.

Thank you for taking the time for this interview, Britney. It’s hard to believe the 2024 season is here. It seems like yesterday that the Leprechauns organization was just getting started. How would you describe these last couple of years in the TBL with Lebanon?

It has been a whirlwind! A wonderful whirlwind, but I can’t believe we are already going into our third season. The first year was full of uncertainty and anticipation. We didn’t know what to expect, but we took it one day at a time and ended up having a great season. I remember that first home game we had about 2000 fans in the stands, and I just remember being on the sideline in tears because I could not believe we did it.

Year two came with a new set of challenges and not as great of an outcome on the basketball side of things, but I still would not trade this job for anything. I built many strong friendships in year two that I didn’t feel like I had time to make in the first. More organization made things easier in year two with all of the lessons learned in year one. I am very excited to see where year three takes us.

How did your opportunity with the Lebanon Leprechauns come about and how has your role as Vice President developed within that time?

Preston Myers, the TMO for the Leprechauns, has truly put everything into this team. I have known Preston for a long time. He originally owned a board game store in my town, which actually is not Lebanon, a friendship was built and I even helped out at the store in my spare time. After he sold that business I didn’t see him for probably 5 years. One day he called me up for lunch and told me about his new idea. Immediately I was in.

When he told me that he was going to start a basketball team I thought he was crazy, but because of the person he is I knew he would pull it off. He said he needed my help with the media side of the project, running the social media and acting as team photographer. My degree is in photography and graphic design, so I told him I knew nothing about basketball and he said that’s fine we can teach basketball.

Since day one I have thrown everything I have into this team and my job has evolved into being second in command. Now mind you, the title might be glorious but the job is definitely not the easiest. From my original jobs, to putting out fires on game days, and me, myself being on the court laying the extended 3 point lines and lane lines in tape, I have definitely put the work in.

What has been the key to growing that online community and bringing the team closer to their fans and followers through your social media reach?

Social media is kind of a fickle thing. We run 5 different media platforms currently and if you treat them all the same it will not work. You must figure out the strategy for each platform.

For example if you want to advertise to players the best way is Instagram. If you want the younger generations IG or TikTok. For adults Facebook or X (Twitter). There are times I will post something on one platform and not the other. It takes a lot of research and strategy to get the word out smoothly. You also have to utilize the best assets of the team: your players. The  reach they have among the 12-14s is higher than what you can ever naturally grow on your own. This past year I created individual folders for the players and provided them all the media that I took during each game. I uploaded it within a day of the game and told them to use it to promote themselves. I could never use all the content we created per game so we passed it to them to share and bring their families and followers to our page. We also wanted them to have that content to help promote themselves.

What’s the most exciting part of your job? And what’s the most difficult?

I am going to answer this question backwards. The most difficult is everything besides the basketball on the court.

Trying to find the sponsorships and ticket sales to support the team can be very complicated and stressful. On a personal level,  I hate saying goodbye to the team that I have got to know so well. Yes a few come back, but this is a league that they use to get to other places. After the season my new friends travel the world. This year I am lucky that we had more players from Indiana and more than likely they will be returning.

The most exciting thing about my job is traveling. Before I started this job, I never really had the extra income or ability to see all the places I have now seen. I have almost up and left the states after I spent a week in Newfoundland Canada with the Rogues. It is the most beautiful place I have ever seen. If you ever get the chance to go I would fully recommend it.

I have now been to the most eastern place on the North American continent, and as far west as Las Vegas. I have seen Niagara Falls and the Grand Canyon, and the Magleys (David and Evelyn) have some great stories about my first time in Vegas. I have met many new people, learned a ton of new things, and I would never have without this team.

The offseason tends to be long but provides time to improve. How do you feel the Leprechauns have gotten better this year, whether it’s on or off of the court?

For off the court, Preston and I have started to trust our staff more. Nothing against them, but it is hard to give up the reigns. This has been our baby, but the operation has grown and we are learning the strengths of the staff members and where they can help us most. So we have developed teams and a chain of command so that we have time to get to things that have needed to be done but we didn’t have the time to do in the past.

What are some ways you are preparing and planning for the 2024 season?

This year we will be in a new arena — in a partnership with Card & Associates to make the Farmer’s Bank Fieldhouse our home — so we are excited to be able to get into it and start to make it ours. We have seen the process as it was built but none of us has seen it finished. I am currently working on all the training camp invites, and I am excited to go to the league meetings in a few weeks.

What do the Leprechauns and TBL mean to you?

Where do I start? When Preston came to me with the info about the team in 2021 I was in a spot in my life where I was doing okay, but felt empty and I didn’t know I needed it. When I started talking to the Magley’s about their mission and found out how caring they were, I immediately felt the passion they have for this league. It was contagious.

This league is my everything.

Don’t get me wrong, after the season ends I like the few months off of recovery from running myself ragged in season but I don’t know what I would do, or who I would be without the TBL and the Leprechauns. I would like to think that I will be somehow involved with the TBL as long as it exists, Leprechauns or no, but obviously, with the Leprechauns would be better.


Wendell Maxey is the author of Around The Basketball League and has written about professional basketball and sports for 20 years. He’s been featured on NBA.com, ESPN.com, USA Today, FOX Sports, and SLAM Magazine among other publications and media outlets. You can connect with him on Twitter and LinkedIn or read through his archive on Linktree. This 2024 season, Wendell will also be a featured writer with the Basketball Super League.


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